Category Archives: Farming

Electronic Gaming Vacation

For the last week-and-a-half, I have been on an electronic gaming vacation.  Normally, I am quite obsessive about playing electronic games (on the computer or Nintendo).  But, of course, this takes time away from things I should be doing:  reading, checking on the animals, farm projects.  I don’t normally allow the games-playing to interfere with absolute essentials, but it does normally limit the amount of time I have available for the important things.  So I am taking a vacation from that so that I can focus more on reading, animals, and projects.

It has been great so far.  Occasionally, I am tired, frustrated, and bored and really want to play, but I resist the temptation.  The progress I have made in the garage has been great!  I have finished putting insulation and drywall on the walls, and now I have a stack of drywall for the ceiling.  I bought a drywall lift that allows me to lift the sheets of drywall to the ceiling without any help, thus making this a one-person job.  I have put up six of the sheets so far — it is a bit slow-going, but it seems to be working well.  The biggest challenge is working around all the junk I have accumulated in the garage.  I plan to try to complete the drywall on the ceiling this weekend, then I will want to get insulation to blow into the attic space.  I also still need to cut out the soffit vents and install the chimney for the wood-burning stove.  Once the insulation is blown into the attic space, I want to put some decking in the attic space in order to provide a platform to store items in that attic space.  Hopefully this can all be done by mid-January.

Future projects still include:

  1. repairing the minivan from its trip into the ditch (before February);
  2. putting a roof and walls on the duck-house (before mid-March);
  3. fencing pasture to prepare for trees and water pipes (unknown deadline)
  4. digging holes for trees (by mid-April);
  5. preparing the garden by moving pigs out to pasture, preparing beds/paths (by mid-May);
  6. building a whizbang chicken scalder (before Summer);

I feel like there are more projects in need of my attention, but I can’t think of them now.  But even this exercise has been helpful — bottom line is I need to complete the garage and get the minivan fixed immediately.  So that I can get to the other projects in a timely manner.

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Growing Homestead

Anymore, I don’t seem to post as often as I would like.  I try to get to the computer to read every day, but writing takes substantially more time, and we have been busy here lately.

The kitchen cabinets are moving along quickly, but now we are to the tough part.  I have three base cabinets to put in, including the sink base, and then I have to install the countertops, which will include installing the sink and hooking it up.

Some time at the end of last week, Meagan got her first rabbit.  He is a little dutch rabbit and she has named him Riley.  He is in a cage that hangs from the ceiling of the chicken coop.

On Monday, Caleb got his first three(!) goats — all female african pygmies.  The african pygmy is a ‘miniature’ goat that produces about 300 quarts of milk per year but also has a stocky build that is good for meat.  We have moved the three of them into the western part of our barn, where we are trying to figure out a way to supply water that doesn’t freeze.  We also need to build a ‘fence that can hold water’ to keep them in.

Also on Monday, Gina got a puppy!  We brought home an eleven-week-old female cross between a black lab and a german shepherd.  She is very pretty.  She is being housed in the dog run right next to the chicken coop, so at night she can go into her own portion of the chicken coop to get out of the wind and share in some of the warmth generated by the chickens.  We hope to get her out and show her around some so she will be able to move around the homestead at will.  We hope that she will be the start of our own livestock guardian dog pack.

We have also received our order of seeds for our garden.  We paid for the seeds with the gift certificate that Herrick Kimball gave us for building and publishing about my very own Whizbang Garden Cart.  I hope to post about my Whizbang Garden Cart again in the spring.   I am looking forward to the spring, but I know it will involve alot of earth-moving.

Our homestead now consists of the five of us (Don, Gina, Caleb, Meagan, and Abigail), the two cats (Chief Wahoo & Rosie), about 50 chickens, one rabbit (Riley), three goats (Skittles, Snickers, & Soda), and one puppy (Bonnie).


Filed under Farming